Friday, September 21, 2012

Mr Brainwash at The Old Sorting Office

I just caught the extention of Mr Brainwash's exhibition at The Old Sorting Office in New Oxford Street. Mr Brainwash aka artist Thierry Guetta is a bit of an infamous street artist from LA.

 This was his first solo European show and I liked the suitable venue of The Old Sorting Office. It retains it's edge, being mostly stripped of it's machinery and industrial in size. BBC Review of the exhibition here

 You are first met by the large pieces of art on the outside walls of the building,including images of the Beatles and Kate Moss. I liked the Queen, guard and corgi with her majesty holding a can of paint and the words "God Save the People" painted next to her.

Inside was a range of art work some of which made me smile and think. Some clever political understanding and understanding of culture. The boxed up life size black cab like the old matchbox toy cars was one to make me smile, very clever, it pulled on my buy me strings.

Lots of 2D work too, mostly prints, multiples using iconic images, Campbells soup as spray cans, referencing Andy Warhol and famous faces, Charlie Chaplin, the Queen, the Rolling Stones,.Madonna and John Lennon to mention a few.

I was pleased to see the work, it stimulated my mind and ideas I've had for more overtly political work. It was good to see the street art/political stance taken with the exhibition being free to enter. And the shop at the end having nothing for sale but being a place where you could choose free things, posters, and postcards.

E17 Poetry Trail and Birds on the streets of Walthamstow

This year  was the first time I entered the E17 Poetry Trail info here , part of the E17 Art Trail info here.

   Penny Rutterford was comissioned by Artillary to curate the Poetry Trail  which included this year, the display of poems, some illustrated by local artists, in estate agents windows along Hoe Street, pavement poetry and events at Vestry House and the William Morris Gallery.

Poem by Jocelyn Cran and image by Carne Griffiths

Paekakariki Press  produced the prints for the display and the anthology of poems. They use the tradition of letterpress printing with an original Heidelberg press.
illustration of the Heidelberg press from Paekakariki Press website

The display of poems works well in the windows, I like the idea of people coming unexpectidly across them as they browse for property.

info about Paekakariki press here

Poem by Michael Shann and image by Anna Alcock

I had illustrated my poem with an acrylic painting, an abstract floral peice that was remarkably difficult to make work in the end. I haven't really tried to illustrate any writing in this way before.

 Usually the writing comes after I've made the art work, or I have a photograph that I've taken or found in mind. This time I had written the poem and had made a few sketches of the flowes on the shrub in question, but then worked on more of a painted feel for the poem.

Poems Mohammad Ali age 9 George Mitchell primary school, my poem and poem by Paul Mc Grane

Poem by Kyshore Kumar age 15 image by Hannah Khan age 11 George Mitchell secondary school

Poem by Janet Wright image by Matilda Bevan

Alban Low and Dean Reddick organised another brilliant Magnetic show as part of the Art Trail this year too.
100 magnets with the theme of "Birds" on the streets of Walthamstow were left around the Town Square by enthusiastic participants of the magnet shows, for people to spot and take home with them. info on the bird magnets and next art work planned here

I joined in by sending 2 images of birds for the magnets and helping the team put them out on Saturday 8th September after hanging some free art on the trees.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Art Grows on Trees E17 Art Trail.

On Saturday, I joined with a group of artist friends on our annual art give away as part of the E17 Art trail. Artists included Katja who had brought some fun cacti work, Dean who hung some of his famous fruit with a twist and Rachel who brought some of her pin hole photographs. Julie had hung some little watercolours and Valeria had some cards to pick.

We have been running Art Grows on Trees for a few years now, putting art work on the trees next to Walthamstow bus station for passers by to pick and take home. This year I put a few paintings and larger pieces of work as I'm sorting my things before moving.

It was great to hear the enthusiasm for my work and peoples real surprise and pleasure at having a free work of art.

We will be putting more work on the trees this Saturday 15th September from around 10am. You have to come early though to pick your choice.

The Paralympic games

 Ruth and I went to the Paralympics last week, we managed to get tickets to the Stadium to see some of the Athletics.

 I was impressed by the stadium, we were near the top this time, but the views were still good and the acoustics worked very well. I was fascinated by some details like the little radio controlled cars that took the discus back from the field. Apparently one of the coveted jobs for the Games Maker volunteers.
The long jump was the opposite side of the arena to us, but I was trying for the action shots.

The radio controlled cars take the discus back.

I spent some time trying to get a photograph of the shot putters actually throwing the put.

 We were also above the podium for the medal ceremonies and it was great to share in some of the joy and pride the athletes felt with their medals.

Outside the stadium the crowds were enjoying the good weather and the English garden was full of visitors.
I enjoyed looking out for all the variations of flags being worn or held by people as we walked around. The atmosphere was very positive and friendly again. It has been one of the hallmarks of the games that everyone has remarked on and has given London a new image I think abroad.

I liked having lots of people around all the tube stations and in town offering help even if I didn't need it.

Crowds walk around the English Garden near the Stadium.